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Why Equal Education Matters to Me

16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer.17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.

2 Corinthians 5:16-20

 So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

1 Corinthians 1: 10

As a Christian, bringing quality education to Memphis schools matters to me because of the students and teachers I serve at my school in Orange Mound. Sometimes school can be a dark place. Seeing students deal with what seems like the weight of the world on their shoulders in elementary school is disheartening. Seeing a kindergarten go on a field trip one morning and never make it back home is devastating. Not to mention, high teacher turnover and burn-out every year is demoralizing. On top of this, the mental and emotional energy needed every day is exhausting. My work is never done and sometimes it never seems like enough. So, why do I stay? Three reasons: 1) regeneration 2) reconciliation 3) excellence. Because of God’s great love and his abundant grace and mercy, I am regenerated – a new creation in Him. I choose to reflect His same love, grace, and mercy in my school. I also stay because, as Christ’s ambassador, I have the awesome privilege of reconciling people back to Christ. I choose to do this by valuing people, assuming the best, and finding common ground whenever possible. Lastly, I choose to stay because I want to reflect God’s glory by demonstrating excellence in all I do. Equal education matters to me because yes, students in Memphis deserve it, but it is way more about reflecting God’s glory and being a small part of His story. Equal education is just the context.

– Merissa Baldwin, Class of 2011